Newcastle and West Ham target facing World Cup D-Day

Alfred Finnbogason’s performance for Iceland next month could secure a Premier League move

Next month European play-offs for the remain spots at next summer’s World Cup in Brazil will be of particular interest to fans and scouts of Newcastle United and West Ham respectively, with key January target Alfred Finnbogason set to play a central role.

The 24-year-old has already been identified as a key transfer target by both clubs, who are keen to add to their current array of attacking options.

At present, the Toon Army rely heavily on Papiss Cisse alongside loan signing Loic Remy for goals, while at Upton Park, Hammers boss Sam Allardyce has been left so short on attacking options that he was forced to sign Mladen Petric and Carlton Cole on short-term deals after the transfer window closed.

Currently on the books of Eredivisie side Heerenveen, the Iceland international has evidently thrived under the tutelage of current manager and Dutch legend Marco Van Basten, with 35 goals in just 41 appearances for the club.

It’s been enough to attract the attentions of West Ham and Newcastle, with the Express reporting earlier today that the two clubs are now set to go head to head for his services in January.

But any move for the 24-year-old could still hinge on his performance in Iceland’s crucial two-leg play-off with Croatia next month.

After a solid qualifying campaign, the national side are just two games away from reaching their first World Cup.

While not an automatic starter, Finnbogason has played his part with three crucial goals in the qualifying group and all eyes will be on the highly-rated forward as Iceland go in search of glory.

Win and the offers could even extend beyond the aforementioned Premier League pair, meaning that come kick-off in Reykjavik on November 15th, the pressure will be on the Dutch league star to impress one and all.

image: © biologyfishman

FIFA World Cup 2018FIFA 2018 World Cup Russia - click here for all of our coverage...

Register for NEWCASTLE UNITED team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch